The Black Diamond Demon Duffel is a hybrid pack designed to fill a number of niches: cragging sack, rope bag and travel pack. Having replaced my old (now discontinued) Red Chili Crag Sack with a BD Demon Duffel some 8 months ago, I’ve been using the Demon between 2 and 4 times a week for all the activities covered under its design brief. What I really like about these sorts of pack is both their capacity and ease of entry. There’s nothing worse than having to empty your rucksack every time you need something buried at the bottom or compromise on how much kit you take to the crag. Ok, they might not carry quite so well as a ‘proper’ pack, but for general single pitch cragging, bouldering and travel purposes they really come into their own.
Nuts & Bolts
So to to the Demon. This duffel is a good example of a modern cragging pack, in that it provides the capacity and ease of entry you’d expect whilst also offering a surprisingly comfortable carry harness, featuring contoured and well padded straps, a stiffened back panel and webbing waist belt, all of which are removable - useful if you need to check the bag in as hold luggage. In this regard it is one of the best examples of duffel I’ve used and would certainly be highly recommended if carrying the pack for longer distances was your main priority. BD Demon Duffel (Coal)Of course as I've already explained, the nature of this sort of bag is its versatility - if carrying the thing was your principal goal you’d buy a rucksack, right? So how does it stack up on other fronts? Capacity wise the Demon hits the mark, providing a sleek yet generous 42L single body capacity, which incidentally just about fits into the maximum dimensional specifications for most carry-on airline baggage. Internally the Black Diamond Demon Duffel hosts a single but extensive zip pocket, which runs the length of the pack. Also included is a detachable rope tarp, easily big enough for an 80m rope. Externally, the bag is equally clean and simple (a quality I commend!), featuring two stiffened carry handles either side of an extremely burley, close knit YKK two-way zip, which extends all the way from one end to the other and finally a single webbing grab handle at the top of the pack. The duffel itself is constructed out of a durable PU backed polyester (making it very water resistant), which in the case of my pack shows little signs of wear after 8 months continuous use.
Whilst I’m all for keeping things simple, I would have liked to have seen a couple of basic webbing compression straps incorporated into the body of the pack, as these can be particularly useful when you are travelling and the bag isn’t filled to capacity. A chest strap would also have been a nice, if non essential, addition.
Overall this is a quality and well thought out pack which is extremely good value for money. It carries well, has plenty of capacity, slides inside a crash pad perfectly and is one of the most durable packs in its category.
The Demon Duffle is no longer available. View our current Holdall range.